- Lemosho Crater Route
- Lemosho Route
- Machame Route
- Rongai Route
- Northern Circuit Route with Crater
- Umbwe Route
The Northern Circuit route approaches Kibo from the west using the Lemosho ascent, then circles clockwise around the quieter northern slopes to Pofu Camp and onward to the east (Third Cave and School Hut Camps), offering outstanding views of the summit from all sides. The north flank of the mountain is remote and less trafficked, so the environment is less disturbed and allows one to enjoy Kilimanjaro away from other climbers. And with an overnight in the soft sand at Crater Camp, the route is well-suited for those seeking an enjoyable backpacking and camping experience without a frantic push for the summit. This allows for superior acclimatization and nearly guaranteed success reaching Uhuru Peak!
per person, double occupancy (single supplement US $475)
• Route encircles the mountain at ±13,000′ / 4,000m.
• Long sections of undisturbed environment.
• Ten total days on Kilimanjaro for maximum acclimatization and nearly 100% success rate.
• Morning summit ascent starts at dawn.
|Hiking Distance||Hiking Time||Elevation Start||Elevation Finish||Elevation Gain|
Mbahe Farm Cottages.
|2||Village cultural walk, rest, climb preparation.|
Mbahe Farm Cottages.
|3||Hiking day 1.|
Londorossi Gate to Big Tree Camp.
|4||Hiking day 2.|
Big Tree Camp to Shira 1 Camp.
|5||Hiking day 3.|
Shira 1 Camp to Shira 2 Camp.
|6||Hiking day 4.|
Shira 2 Camp to Moir Hut Camp.
|7||Hiking day 5.|
Moir Hut Camp to Pofu Camp.
|8||Hiking day 6.|
Pofu Camp to Third Cave Camp.
|9||Hiking day 7.|
Third Cave Camp to School Hut Camp.
|10||Hiking day 8.|
School Hut Camp to Crater Camp.
|11||Hiking day 9.|
Crater Camp to Uhuru Peak to Millennium Camp.
|1 hour to Uhuru|
4 hours to Millennium
|12||Hiking day 10.|
Millennium Camp to Mweka Gate.
Ameg Lodge or Pink Flamingo Hotel, Moshi Town.
|13||Moshi Town tour.|
We will pick you up upon arrival at the Kilimanjaro International Airport and bring you to Mbahe Village, located in the foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro, approximately 2 hours from the airport. Accommodations are in SENE’s private cottages at Simon Mtuy’s Mbahe Village Farm.
Overnight: Mbahe Farm Cottages.
Day 2: Mbahe Village, Kilimanjaro
You have the morning to rest and relax. Enjoy delicious “homebrew” coffee, grown and roasted on the farm, and meals made with fruits and vegetables from the garden. Your trip leader will provide a climb orientation and equipment check. This is also a day to take a guided tour around Mbahe Village, the Mtuy family farm, and to swim in the river and waterfall running through Simon’s land.
Overnight: Mbahe Farm Cottages.
Day 3: Londorossi Gate to Big Tree Camp
After breakfast, we drive to Londorossi Gate, where you will meet your other guides and mountain crew and enter the Kilimanjaro National Park. From the trailhead, we walk for a few hours uphill through the thick and undisturbed montane forest to our camp for the night. Many beautiful flowers are seen en route and with luck, we will observe colobus monkeys at play. In the evening you may hear the unforgettable shrieking call of the tree hyrax.
Overnight: Big Tree Camp.
Day 4: Big Tree Camp to Shira 1 Camp
Today we reach the west side of the Shira Plateau in a hiking time of 6 hours. Taking our time walking through the forest allows us to observe its animal and bird life. The day’s hike takes us from the montane forest, through a transition zone, and into the heather zone, where old lava flows are visible. Your guides will point out unique environmental differences that characterize each zone. After a picnic lunch, we reach the edge of the Plateau and eventually our camp that offers a dramatic view of Kilimanjaro and its permanent glaciers.
Overnight: Shira 1 Camp.
Day 5: Shira 1 Camp to Shira 2 Camp
Today is an easy paced acclimatization day of 4 to 5 hours hiking. Camp is set higher on the Shira Plateau with more expansive views of Kilimanjaro. There is a conditioning hike in the afternoon where you can examine the clusters of giant lobelias and senecios that grow at this elevation.
Overnight: Shira 2 Camp.
Day 6: Shira 2 Camp to Moir Hut Camp
Today we start by heading due east toward Kibo, before veering northward as we start our circumnavigation of the northern flank of Kilimanjaro and diverge from the routes leading along the south side. The majesty of the solitude begins to envelop us as we enjoy the remoteness of the route. The sheer-sided peaceful valley where camp is set affords wonderful views over Shira, from whence we just came, and up to Kibo where we will be in a few days.
Overnight: Moir Hut Camp.
Day 7: Moir Hut Camp to Pofu Camp
We have a steep climb out of the Moir Valley, followed by more gradual up-and-down ascent up to 14,400 feet before a long descent and a brief rock scramble to our camp more than a thousand feet lower. This helps in acclimatization as we “climb high, sleep low.” The rarely-used path can be followed by the cairns placed at periodic intervals. Pofu means eland in Swahili as the area was popular in the past for these majestic antelope to graze in the area.
Overnight: Pofu Camp.
Leaving Pofu Camp, we’ll continue to circle around the mountain’s north side, with magnificent views of Kenya the whole way. The route crosses several valleys and ridges, each distinct from the next, making for lots of up-and-down Kilimanjaro Climb and a surprisingly tiring day of hiking. You will notice that the vegetation begins to thin with the drier conditions on this northeastern section of Kilimanjaro.
Overnight: Third Cave Camp.
Day 9: Third Cave Camp to School Hut Camp
There is a steady ascent to reach the saddle, a lunar landscape between the peaks of Kibo and Mawenzi. From here we continue upwards and reach School Hut (15,500 feet) in the early afternoon. The remainder of the afternoon is spent resting and preparing for the summit day.
Overnight: School Hut Camp.
Day 10: School Hut Camp to Crater Camp
We have a long and steep ascent with many switchbacks up to Gillman’s Point, from which we traverse the crater rim, then at Stella Point descend slightly into the crater. Across the floor of the crater is Crater Camp, with its great views of the surrounding glaciers.
Overnight: Crater Camp.
Day 11: Crater Camp to Uhuru Peak to Millennium Camp
After an early breakfast, we make the final ascent to Uhuru Peak, reaching the 19,340 foot summit of Kilimanjaro by 8 a.m. At this early hour, before the clouds close in, you will have spectacular views of Africa in all directions. After a brief stay for photos, hugs, and high fives, we descend 2 to 3 hours to Barafu Camp for lunch, rest, and to take off extra layers. Continuing downhill 3 to 4 hours to the edge of the Mweka Forest, we reach the final night’s camp – 7,000 feet below the summit! Eat, share your experiences of the climb, and sleep soundly. Congratulations, you touched the Roof of Africa!
Overnight: Millennium Camp.
Day 12: Millennium Camp to Mweka Gate; Moshi Town
Our last day is another descent of 7,000 feet with 4 to 5 hours of hiking to the exit at Mweka Gate. The trail is steep in places and within the forest may be slippery if wet. After a hearty celebration lunch with the whole team on private SENE land near the exit gate to say goodbye to the mountain crew, the trip leaders bring you to your hotel in Moshi Town to relax, have dinner, and enjoy its spacious garden and swimming pool. (Those going on safari tomorrow will overnight at a hotel in Arusha, closer to the wildlife parks.)
Overnight: Ameg Lodge or Pink Flamingo Hotel.
Day 13: Moshi Town
Those heading out on safari or to Zanzibar will depart after breakfast to continue your African adventure. For those returning home, we offer you a guided tour of Moshi Town with its colorful market and curio shops. You may eat lunch in town or back at the lodge (lunch not included). Transfer by SENE to the Kilimanjaro Airport.
- All accommodations for 13 days / 12 nights.
- All meals as indicated (B,L,D).
- On climb, filtered water (by Katadyn Expedition® filter) and coffee, teas, cocoa.
- Services of trip leader, climbing guides, and mountain crew.
- Kilimanjaro National Park entrance, camping, and rescue fees, including supplemental crater camp fee.
- All camping and dining equipment (excluding sleeping bag and pad).
- Portable private toilet with bio-degradable waste system (Cleanwaste®) at all camps.
- Gamow bag (portable hyperbaric chamber) and supplemental oxygen for emergency descents.
- Transfers to/from Kilimanjaro International Airport and to/from park entrance/exit gates.
- Guided Mbahe Village walking tour.
- Guided Moshi Town walking tour.